Google Develops Blimp and Balloon Network to Connect Billions

The search giant is reportedly building high-altitude wireless networks to reach emerging markets like sub-Saharan African and Southeast Asia. 

Posted: 05/28/2013 12:25 PM EDT

It's not a bird, or a plane. It's Google.

The search titan reportedly plans to develop a series of aerial wireless networks using balloons and blimps, according to The Wall Street Journal. Emerging markets in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia, as well as rural areas near major cities are the targeted demographics that Google hopes to reach. 

These high-altitude platforms are able to transmit signals to an area of hundreds of square miles, and could also be used to enhance Internet speed in urban centers. If successful, these networks could connect a billion or more new people to the Internet. 

Other technologies that Google has considered for this venture include television broadcast airwaves and satellite-based networks.

"There's not going to be one technology that will be the silver bullet," an unnamed source told WSJ.

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(Photo: Courtesy of Google)

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